Gauff weighs in on Florida education debate

tennis11 March 2023 08:35| © Reuters
Coco Gauff © Getty Images

Teen tennis star Coco Gauff on Friday stressed the importance of teaching a full version of history amid a debate in her home state of Florida over an African American studies course for US high school students.

Florida's Republican Governor Ron DeSantis blasted the pilot course when its contents were leaked last fall, saying it pushed a liberal agenda. Read full story

"I think history is history. Education is education," Gauff said after her second round win at the Indian Wells tournament in Southern California, where she is seeded sixth.

"I know in the state of Florida there's a lot of conversation about that, but my personal opinion is it's history.

"I feel like when you don't teach kids history, they're bound to repeat it. Growing up I learned the goods and bads, and a brown history. I think you can learn a lot from that."

Gauff, who turns 19 on Monday, said her parents and grandparents truthfully answered whatever questions she had when she was growing up and said adults should not underestimate the ability of young people to engage with difficult topics.

"What we teach them can help shape who they are going to be in the future," she said.

"If we want to have good morals and hopefully a better history in the future, I think we have to teach even the dark parts of it, in an age-appropriate way of course."

Gauff faces Czech Linda Noskova in the third round of the WTA 1000 tournament on Sunday.